Sustainable Environmental Management & Crisis Prevention Portfolios

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Evaluation Plan:
2008-2012, Samoa
Evaluation Type:
Outcome
Planned End Date:
12/2011
Completion Date:
12/2011
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
30,000

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Title Sustainable Environmental Management & Crisis Prevention Portfolios
Atlas Project Number:
Evaluation Plan: 2008-2012, Samoa
Evaluation Type: Outcome
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 12/2011
Planned End Date: 12/2011
Management Response: Yes
Focus Area:
  • 1. Crisis Prevention & Recovery
  • 2. Environment & Sustainable Development
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021)
  • 1. National and local institutions have the capacities to fulfill key functions of government for recovery in early post-crisis situations
  • 2. Development plans and programmes integrate environmentally sustainable solutions in a manner that promotes poverty reduction, MDG achievement and low-emission climate-resilient development
  • 3. Strengthened management and conservation of marine, coastal, and freshwater resources in the Pacific islands region.
Evaluation Budget(US $): 30,000
Source of Funding:
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Nationality
Thomas Otter Team Leader
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders: Gov'ts of CKI, Niue, Samoa & Tokelau, relevant ministries, communities, NGO, devpt partners etc
Countries: SAMOA
Comments: This outcome evaluation will comprise of both the enviroment and the crisis prevention portfolio given their similarities and linkages and will be conducted by the Evalaution Office in conjuction with the ADR sceduled for 2011.
Lessons
Findings
Recommendations
1 EFFECTIVENESS: (1)Link project activities closer with strategic and business plans like UNDAF, CP, or CPAP. (2) Expand the scope of activities so that they can have an impact on all defined CP outputs. (3)  Reduce staff turnover and increase staff in Climate Change and Environment unit. (4) Less complex project designs are required for a successful implementation in the smallest PICs. (5) Since the scope of effectiveness for regional programmes seems to be higher than for local ones, study closely where ?regionalizing programmes? would make sense for the future.
2 EFFICIENCY: (1) UNDP MCO Samoa should organize a multi-donor meeting to discuss the possibility of harmonizing and simplifying reporting requirements across donors.Doing so would make cooperation processes more efficient and increase ownership and decision making of governments. (2)Define indicators and benchmarks for monitoring cost and time efficiency. A delay in implementation might not compromise the general effectiveness, but rather the timing of results in order to achieve synergies between projects. (3)Revise the modalities of existing participation of beneficiary countries in project design and approval, since these mechanisms obviously do not provide the expected results in the sense that countries are able to implement projects in its complete extent without major concerns. (4) Implement periodic trainings with partners, on project administration and reporting.
3 IMPACT AND DEGREE OF CHANGE: (1)In order to achieve a higher impact or degree of change, project outputs and their quality have to be monitored more closely and should be reviewed more frequently or at an earlier stage of implementation. (2) If UNDP office staff cannot implement the recommended monitoring work, the office has to make sure that technical experts are brought on board right through the life of the project cycles, at critical stages, to ensure that the outputs and decisions taken are informed by scientific and cutting edge thinking. (3) There is a need for regular field visits by the UNDP staff, to be able to take corrective actions as the projects proceed. Budget has to be provided for these monitoring visits. A visit schedule for 2011 has already been developed. (4)Specific assessments of project results, such as lessons learned, best practices and mainstreaming of cross-cutting issues such as gender,must be undertaken in order to understand how the achieved results between CCSDP, ERP, SGP, CBA and to certain degree the PACC project, can be integrated for future activities. (5)A possible way forward for the next CP cycle could consist in the documentation of experiences on how national policies have successfully been implemented at a local level. Since environment policies are already in place, tools for their implementation are now required. (6)Co-financing of regional projects should only be continued where it has proved to make a difference.
4 PARTNERSHIP STRATEGY: (1)Continue the partnership with UNV since it is a valuable source for human resources for the UNDP MCO. (2)Continue partnership with SPREP and learn mutually from each other. UNDP can strengthen its technical expertise in joint activities with SPREP, and SPREP can increase its skills in project implementation, monitoring and evaluation. (3) Elaborate a clear proposal for Suva and Bangkok as to where and how Samoa wants to use their expertise and discuss this with them. (4) Look for new and additional partners for fundraising. Joint UNDP/SPREP proposals could provide competitive advantages for fundraising and project implementation. (5)Consider the possibility of collaborating with NZ-Aid in the area of disaster risk management.
5 SUSTAINABILITY: (1)Existing community development plans should start their implementation. CBA and SGP funds should be considered for this implementation. (2)Expand coverage of community planning and improve planning approach. More guidance for the planning exercise is required. (3)Design exit and transition strategies for ending projects.
1. Recommendation: EFFECTIVENESS: (1)Link project activities closer with strategic and business plans like UNDAF, CP, or CPAP. (2) Expand the scope of activities so that they can have an impact on all defined CP outputs. (3)  Reduce staff turnover and increase staff in Climate Change and Environment unit. (4) Less complex project designs are required for a successful implementation in the smallest PICs. (5) Since the scope of effectiveness for regional programmes seems to be higher than for local ones, study closely where ?regionalizing programmes? would make sense for the future.
Management Response: [Added: 2012/04/17] [Last Updated: 2012/04/18]

(1)The evaluated projects are already registered in atlas where they are are already connected through the project tree to the bureau business plan and corporate environmental and Climate Change priorities. The revision of UNDAF underway and the new priorities for the region have been identified and are linked with project activities. (2)The scope of activities can not be expanded for ongoing projects because they are timebound and targets were defined at the beginning of the project. However, projects like PACC, PIGGAREP or ICCRAHS are already taking a mulitisectoral approach such that benefits accrue in all the areas (env, CC, governance and disaster risk reduction) (3)3 cc/adaptation/energy experts are already on board supporting project implementation and ensuring technical oversight of projects. This is expected to be supported with a full time P4 level env/CC manager. In addition the unit is supported by a Project Associate. Totally agree. As new programmes on env and CC come on board, the capacity of institutions concerned and the reduction of transaction costs will be considered. For PACC an important element of the MTE is looking at Management/operational arrangements. It is the expectation that the PMSU of the projects will be pulled together under a sector programme on env/CC at the national level (4)The new project designs for pipeline projects have been developed in consultation with the government as well as lessons learnt and best practices from existing projects. The new proposals have been based on existing structures and have taken into account previous initiatives to build upon. (5)There is a clear need for programmes of both regional approach and national approach to happen simultaneously to leverage benefits and impacts for the countries. Therefore UNDP portfolio is a mix of both approaches

Key Actions:

2. Recommendation: EFFICIENCY: (1) UNDP MCO Samoa should organize a multi-donor meeting to discuss the possibility of harmonizing and simplifying reporting requirements across donors.Doing so would make cooperation processes more efficient and increase ownership and decision making of governments. (2)Define indicators and benchmarks for monitoring cost and time efficiency. A delay in implementation might not compromise the general effectiveness, but rather the timing of results in order to achieve synergies between projects. (3)Revise the modalities of existing participation of beneficiary countries in project design and approval, since these mechanisms obviously do not provide the expected results in the sense that countries are able to implement projects in its complete extent without major concerns. (4) Implement periodic trainings with partners, on project administration and reporting.
Management Response: [Added: 2012/04/18]

(1)We are mindful that improvements need to be made, some important steps taken include the hosting of a multidonor meeting in June 2011 where these issues have been discussed and implemented. Under the ONE UN arrangements there is expected to be further allignment among UN agencies themselves. In samoa in particular, the government is ensuring that the plethora of climate change and environment programmes are directly linked with environment sector programme activities eventually leading to common planning, monitoring and implementation (2)The Progress Implementation Review and Annual progress reports done this year provided the oppurtunity to revise the orginal logical framework of the project and reflect indicators that respond to the effective implementation of the projects. (3)we are currently working on UN Volunteers to be based in the countries for project implementation. Cook islands has recently recruited a UN officer for the government to oversee the management of UNDP projects in country. (4)A Coordinators workshop with all UNDP project coordinators was conducted in november 28th-30th 2011 to provide training on project management, Results based Management and operations as well as establishing networks. This workshop is expected to be repeated annually.

Key Actions:

3. Recommendation: IMPACT AND DEGREE OF CHANGE: (1)In order to achieve a higher impact or degree of change, project outputs and their quality have to be monitored more closely and should be reviewed more frequently or at an earlier stage of implementation. (2) If UNDP office staff cannot implement the recommended monitoring work, the office has to make sure that technical experts are brought on board right through the life of the project cycles, at critical stages, to ensure that the outputs and decisions taken are informed by scientific and cutting edge thinking. (3) There is a need for regular field visits by the UNDP staff, to be able to take corrective actions as the projects proceed. Budget has to be provided for these monitoring visits. A visit schedule for 2011 has already been developed. (4)Specific assessments of project results, such as lessons learned, best practices and mainstreaming of cross-cutting issues such as gender,must be undertaken in order to understand how the achieved results between CCSDP, ERP, SGP, CBA and to certain degree the PACC project, can be integrated for future activities. (5)A possible way forward for the next CP cycle could consist in the documentation of experiences on how national policies have successfully been implemented at a local level. Since environment policies are already in place, tools for their implementation are now required. (6)Co-financing of regional projects should only be continued where it has proved to make a difference.
Management Response: [Added: 2012/04/18]

(1)For 2012 there will a revised version of the 2011 monitoring and evaluation plan for all projects which will clearly indicate achievement of project outputs and follow up actions. For the regional projects PACC & PIGGAREP and Climate Change projects new reporting tools have been put in place to enhance project implementation and ensure capturing of results. UNDP´s project monitoring and evaluation procedures are applied in full allowing for actions identified to be captured and applied. (2)Projects recruit technical experts for the mid-term evaluation as well as terminal evaluation of all projects to ensure the project is inline with its overall output. UNDP also has in place regional technical advisors from the APRC Asia-Pacific Regional Centre who provide this role. Technical support groups are in place for projects to support the project management unit. In the new cycle, also UNVs will assist with implementation on the ground. (3)Discussions were held in february 2012 resulting on a workplan of ?engagement? between samoa MCO, Fiji MCO and BKK to underatke regular field visits that will be reflected in the 2012 monitoring and evaluaiton plan. (4)All projects produce progress reports every quarter where information of this kind is captured at the individual level. Currently, a communications consultant is assisting with capturing of results for lessons learnt and successful stories for replication in other projects. (5)To be taken into consideration for the developing of the new CP. (6)Noted for action. With SPREP which will continue and we are also engaging with others like the government of Australia to enhance resources mobilisation.

Key Actions:

4. Recommendation: PARTNERSHIP STRATEGY: (1)Continue the partnership with UNV since it is a valuable source for human resources for the UNDP MCO. (2)Continue partnership with SPREP and learn mutually from each other. UNDP can strengthen its technical expertise in joint activities with SPREP, and SPREP can increase its skills in project implementation, monitoring and evaluation. (3) Elaborate a clear proposal for Suva and Bangkok as to where and how Samoa wants to use their expertise and discuss this with them. (4) Look for new and additional partners for fundraising. Joint UNDP/SPREP proposals could provide competitive advantages for fundraising and project implementation. (5)Consider the possibility of collaborating with NZ-Aid in the area of disaster risk management.
Management Response: [Added: 2012/04/18]

(1)For 2012 there is a plan to creat national UNV program for the 4 countries Samoa, Niue, Cook islanda and Tokelau. The plan includes the recruitment of approximately 30 national UNV for 2012. (2)SPREP were invited in the coordinators workshop in November 2011 to increase partnership and build capacity with UNDP procedures and requirements and vice versa. UNDP have been invited to trainings in SPREP for Cost benefit analysis for climate change interventions for regional projects. UNDP and SPREP meet frequently at managment and programme level for implementation of projects. (3)noted for action. (4)we have built strong partnership with Government of Australia for Climate change projects with regional approach. (5)Working with Donor partners and country DMOS for the cluster approach during disasters. We will follow up with New Zealand.

Key Actions:

5. Recommendation: SUSTAINABILITY: (1)Existing community development plans should start their implementation. CBA and SGP funds should be considered for this implementation. (2)Expand coverage of community planning and improve planning approach. More guidance for the planning exercise is required. (3)Design exit and transition strategies for ending projects.
Management Response: [Added: 2012/04/18]

(1)Village Sustainable Development Plans are already in implementation phase for the CCSDP (Samoa, Cook Islands, Niue and Tokelau) and ER projects (Samoa and Cook islands) CBA/SGP and CSSP require the use of the VSDPs inorder to access funds for village development. (2)For Samoa the process for the development of VSDP for the 23 villages wil be replicated in the remaining 365 villages as included in the community sector plan. In tokelau the VSDPs were developed for the 3 atolls and contributed to the national Tokelau Strategic plan. For Cook islands and Niue the VSDP have been a model for development in the community and plans are in place for replication to other outer villages. (3)In progress, For example Cook islands SLM will be linked to the Cook Islands adaptation fund proposal and the Samoa SLM will be lined to the GEF 5 Critical landscapes project.

Key Actions:

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